Removing Honey from Silk

by April Reinhardt
(last updated December 31, 2012)

A natural protein fiber woven into textiles, silk is the filament of cocoons formed by caterpillars. A caterpillar, or silkworm, can spin about one mile of silk in three days. After being brushed and formed into filaments, the raw silk is placed onto a spinning wheel where it is twisted with more filaments until the silk becomes thread. It can then be dyed and woven into textiles.

Because silk can attract pests and bugs if left dirty, it is best to clean foodstuffs from silk as soon as possible. But since silk can stain, shrink, and fade easily, you need to take extra care when washing it. Removing breadcrumbs from a silk blouse with a flick of your fingers seems easy enough, but if you've dripped honey onto a silk tie or blouse while eating your biscuits, the cleaning job will prove more daunting. Since honey is dense, sticky, and is apt to stain fabrics, removing honey from silk requires several steps. Here are some guidelines for removing honey from silk:

  • Act immediately. Don't wait for the honey to harden.
  • Do not use a washing machine to wash silk. Use a clean bathroom sink and fill it halfway with lukewarm water.
  • If you have iron in your water, or if your water is hard, add a spoonful of borax.
  • Use a mild detergent such as Woolite, Ivory liquid, or baby shampoo.
  • Completely rinse the honey from the silk. Do not rub the fabric, as you may spread the honey to other areas. Honey's composition breaks down the more you dilute it with water. Hold the fabric under running lukewarm water until the tackiness disappears.
  • Add a few drops of the detergent and gently massage into the fabric.
  • Rinse the garment again and again until the soap residue is gone.
  • Do not wring the garment. Instead, lay the garment flat on a thick towel, and roll it loosely. Allow the garment to stay inside of the towel overnight.
  • Unroll the towel the following day and remove the garment to another clean, dry towel and allow it to lay flat to dry.

The garment may appear puckered at the seams after you remove it from the rolled towel. The puckers will disappear after the garment is completely dry. Sometimes the drying process may take several days. Never apply heat to dry silk.

Author Bio

April Reinhardt

An admin­istrator for a mutual fund man­age­ment firm, April deals with the writ­ten word daily. She loves to write and plans to author a memoir in the near future. April attend­ed More­head State Uni­ver­sity to pursue a BA degree in Ele­men­tary Edu­ca­tion. ...

MORE FROM APRIL

Dressing in Layers and Still Looking Great

Even if you live in a warm climate, you can still dress in layers using thin materials. Dressing in layers can add visual ...

Discover More

Replacing a Thermostat

Although replacing a thermostat is a relatively simple task, it can be quite dangerous since you're dealing with ...

Discover More

Preventing Ants from Killing a Lemon Tree

To prevent ants from climbing your lemon tree, use a few common substances you probably already have on hand. Ants hate ...

Discover More

Tough Cleaning Jobs Require Brawny! Brawny paper towels provide the versatility you need: the strength for demanding jobs and the softness to clean up your child's messy face. This 24-roll pack of pick-a-size sheets can handle just about every cleaning task in your home. Check out Brawny 24-Pack Giant Paper Towels today!

More Cleaning Tips

Wedding Gown Preservation

Wedding gowns can take a long time to search for, and they can also be quite expensive. When you have the perfect dress, ...

Discover More

Dealing with Leather Stained White Socks

If you like to wear boots, work boots, or even steel toed work boots then you know just how quickly your white socks can ...

Discover More

Letting Out Hems on Clothing

Sometimes you just grow out of clothes, but still want to wear them. Instead of wearing clothes that are obviously too ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in Cleaning Tips from Tips.Net. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is 8 - 1?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in Cleaning Tips from Tips.Net. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.